Got Genealogy Questions?

Do you have a genealogy question? Have you hit a brick wall in your genealogy research? Need help? Write our free “Ask the Genealogist” service and let’s see what we can find out for you about your family history.

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Here’s a question about genealogy research we just received:

“Hello, I am researching the Moxham family line in Niagara, New York. I was doing fine then hit a block with Fred E. Moxham from 1861. I have done checking everywhere I could think of. He married Anna Maurer. I know he died young. If I could just figure out his father’s name it would be a great help I believe. Any thoughts?”

Here is our response to the genealogy question we were asked:

Notice that in the 1892 New York State census they list Fred as born in the U.S.

See: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-266-11684-14945-80?cc=1529100

Notice also that in the 1900 census his children state that the birth place of their father was New York.

See: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MS2F-X22

  • Since he died in the Niagara County area—have you found copies of the probate file for his estate?
  • Do you have his death certificate?
  • Do you have a copy of their marriage certificate?
  • What church did they attend?
  • Did you find him in the 1870 census? 1880?

What do you make of the “other” Frederick Moxham living in Niagara County? He was born March 1830 in England.

In the 1880 census that other Frederick is 50 years old, his wife is 33 years old, and their oldest child is 12.

See: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MZX8-DMP

Their difference in age in the 1880 census allows room for him to have had a first wife—and if so, they could have been the parents of your Frederick. Let’s see where this takes us.

You need to run the church, probate, land and census records for both Moxham households to see where the connections to your Fred E. Moxham are.

You can obtain those records from your area FamilySearch Center.

See: https://familysearch.org/search/search/library_catalog#searchType=catalog&filtered=true&fed=false&collectionId=&catSearchType=place&searchCriteria=&placeName=New+York%2C+Niagara&author_givenName=&author_surname=

For example, there is a marriage certificate for your Frederick Moxham’s son: Howard Moxham marrying Ruby Banks on 23 Dec 1911 in Niagara, New York.

See: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/F6SK-LWL

And here is the marriage certificate for his son: Harold Fred Moxham in 1909.

See: https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/F6SF-7PY

You want to see these marriage certificates to see if they give the city/state of birth of the father Frederick E. Moxham. Hopefully it will give you the city so you can then find his birth/baptismal certificates.

Try these suggestions and let me know what you find.

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Written by Thomas Jay Kemp

Thomas Jay Kemp

Thomas Jay Kemp is the Director of Genealogy Products at GenealogyBank. Tom Kemp is an internationally known librarian and archivist – he is the author of over 35 genealogy books and hundreds of articles about genealogy and family history.

He previously served as the Chair of the National Council of Library & Information Associations (Washington, DC) and as Library Director of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

An active genealogist, he has been working on his own family history for 47 years. With the rapidly growing online archives at GenealogyBank – it is a great day for genealogy!

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2 thoughts on “Got Genealogy Questions?

  1. I am trying to find my grandmother's family. Her name is Sarah Jane Lewis, born 17 Jan. 1871. Her mother, West Duck Lewis was murdered about 1877-1878. She was put in the Oxford Masonic Orphanage in Oxford, N.C. I have a copy of the ledger sheet where she was adopted in 1881 but her marriage certificate is Sarah Jane Lewis. I can't seem to find anything about her mother or her father Boss King Lewis ( according to the ledger sheet) On her death certificate, her son-in-law gave the information and he gave the name Samuel Lewis as her father. They lived in Halifax Co., N.C. at the time of the murder. Any help would be appreciated.

  2. I don’t see a place designated for questions so I will put mine here. My g.g.g.g father,
    John Reinhardt was listed as shown:!John Reinhardt is listed in the following:
    Census: 1850, 1855, 1860, 1865
    Brooklyn Directories:

    Year Address
    1843-44 54 Henry Street Baker
    1844-48 97 Bridge Street ”
    1854-58 68 Bridge Street ”
    1859-60 83 Bridge Street ”
    1862 83 Bridge Street (Info obtained from wife’s death certificate) 1864-65 83 Bridge Stret Baker
    1865-66 84 Bridge Street Baker
    1869 NYC directory Reinhardt John, exchange, 38 1/2 Monroe, h 83 Bridge, B’klyn
    1869 83 Bridge Street Baker
    1870-71 83 Bridge Street Lotteries
    1882 36 Charles Street (Info obtained from his death certificate)

    There is also a listing for a Maria Rheinhardt a widow, living at the corner of Garrison on front street 1844.
    I believe it was the 1850 or 1860 census that said he owned his house. How can I find records for that? For most of the time he lived at 83 Bridge. How can I find a listing for his bakery and if it was his or he worked for someone?
    In 1882 he died after being in the Prison on Blackwell’s Island. He was tried in abstentia and found guilty of selling lotteries. How can I find out any thing about his trial. How did he die? Maybe he was murdered.

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